PLEDGE NOW
Here and Now with Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson
Public radio's live
midday news program
With sponsorship from
Mathworks - Accelerating the pace of engineering and science
Accelerating the pace
of engineering and science
Friday, December 20, 2013

A Resurgence Of Electronic Classical Music

Tristan Perich is a composer who builds and programs microchips to make music. (tristanperich.com)

Tristan Perich is a composer who builds and programs microchips to make music. (tristanperich.com)

Electronic sounds created by machines like vocoders, synthesizers and laptops have become pretty standard in popular music, but electronic music is also having a resurgence in new works by classical composers.

Classical composers have worked with electronics since the end of World War II, but the new technologies and people’s growing familiarity with electronically-produced sounds has led to new and interesting works in the classical world.

Composers working with electronic music use a range of devices, from computers — like their pop music counterparts use — to electronic hardware like microchips, in order to produce sound.

Jacob Cooper, a Brooklyn-based composer who makes electronic music, joins Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson to share compositions by his peers who work with electronics.

His picks include works by Daniel Wohl, who processes acoustic instruments through computer software; Tristan Perich, who builds and programs microchips; Paula Matthusen, who creates multimedia installations; and Ted Hearne and Philip White, who collaborate as R We Who R We to recompose pop songs with live electronic manipulation and processing.

While some electronic classical music is experimental and might sound like noise, Cooper says it just takes a little open-mindedness.

“The question of what is music is an age-old question,” Cooper tells Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson. “I like to think of music as any sound that is organized and creates a reaction in the listener, which this certainly does.”

Jacob’s Picks

Guest


Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

July 30 33 Comments

Oxford Conservationist Talks About 7 Years Of Tracking Cecil

The 13-year-old lion was not only a tourist favorite, but also, a research animal. The beloved lion was being studied by the Oxford University Conservation Unit.

July 30 23 Comments

NAACP To Begin 860-Mile ‘Journey For Justice’ March

The march, which will travel from Selma, Ala. to Washington, seeks to highlight vulnerable communities subject to regressive voting rights.

July 29 2 Comments

Garden-Inspired Cooking With Kathy Gunst

We visit our resident chef's garden in Maine, make gazpacho and get a recipe for a plum tart with hazelnut crust.

July 29 639 Comments

Two Sides Of The GMO Debate

We moderate a debate over a bill that would bar states from forcing food manufacturers to label genetically modified foods.